Apeirophobia: Ahmed Abdel Ghani Explores the Fear of Eternity & Death at Picasso Art Gallery
The mere thought of what happens in the afterlife is quite disturbing in itself, but the fear of the continuation of what happens there is overwhelming – especially if it persists. This is the very definition of Apeirophobia – a fear of eternity that is closely tied to the fear of death, thanatophobia.
Among the treatments of Apeirophobia is focusing on the many details of life, which is the approach that Egyptian artist, Ahmed Abdel Ghani, takes in his newest collection, currently showing at Picasso Art Gallery.
This method of overcoming Apeirophobia is the key to understand Abdel Ghani’s latest collection, which boasts a number of hyper-realistic scenes of his daily life, precisely in his Al-Azhari Street apartment.
The first thing one notices about the still-life paintings, which depict the artist’s personal surroundings, is the angle with which they’re painted. The objects in the scenes are drawn from a high angle, giving the beholder an intimate invitation to see through the Abdel Ghani’s eyes.
In one of the paintings, Abdel Ghani shares a view of a suitcase placed next to a leather chair, a clock on a marble-top table and the corner of a rug. The general palette follows the dark concept of the collection with different shades of grey of the clock and the table, as well as the dull blues and reds of the rug. However, the warm brown of the detailed suitcase symbolises the artist’s desire to walk away from his mental state.
Though the previous painting carries a hopeful mood transition, some of the paintings translate the artist’s pensiveness. With no still-life objects in the scene, one painting presents a stairwell, from which the viewer see the two doors of the apartments on the lower floor. The red and the yellow of the walls surrounding the doors catch the eyes at first glance. But one can’t help but follow the continuity of the grey stairwell that dominates the two thirds of the painting, depicting the eternity of the unknown that awaits every mortal.
In many cases, art is a safe sanctuary from dull reality; in other cases, it documents it – especially if of significance. In Apeirophobia, Abdel Ghani may not take you to the imaginary realms of art, but boldly facing reality, he transforms an intangible fear into masterpieces.